Executive Intelligence Review


Task Force China: ‘The Time Has Come for Italy To Ride the Chinese Wave’

Aug. 23, 2018 (EIRNS)—The statement announcing the creation of a “Task Force China” under Italy’s Ministry for Economic Development, and headed by Undersecretary Michele Geraci , included the following section not previously reported:

“The speed of China’s economic transformation is questioning most traditional economic development theories and the traditional bilateral approach. The Task Force is intended to build a new analytical framework and operational mechanism capable of keeping pace with China’s development, as to avoid becoming passive onlookers of the shift towards the East of the world’s economic center.

“In the words of Undersecretary [of Economic Development Michele] Geraci, ‘The change that the Italian government wants to achieve—in a harmonious spirit of consultation with all stakeholders—passes through the establishment of this innovative forum for analysis and policy action, which will be able to provide shared and well-informed responses in our dialogue with China. This country—which has launched the ambitious program for technological progress known as ‘Made in China 2025’ and which also has an immense internal market increasingly focused on quality goods—represents for Italy a risk (being China a direct competitor of our manufacturing sector) and also an opportunity, both in terms of exports and FDI [foreign direct investment]: The time has come for Italy to seize these opportunities and ride the Chinese wave, rather than just standing by, watching. In my 10 years in China, I discovered that acting individually is a losing strategy with China: It is always more productive to coordinate a systemic approach.’

“The Task Force, which is being set up in the imminence of the first official mission in China by Undersecretary Geraci at the end of the current month and which is taking place ahead of the two major autumn exhibitions in Shanghai and Chengdu will be open (like the recently established Free Trade Task Force) to the contributions of all interested parties, including universities and think-tanks. MISE [Ministry for Economic Development] will organize a series of regular meetings, which will discuss specific topics in detail taking into consideration all variables at stake.”